The Real Deal Miami

New “creative” office spaces to make inroads in U.S. cities

December 20, 2011 01:34PM

At Facebook.com’s new Silicon Valley headquarters in Menlo Park, Calif., employees roam the halls with laptops, discuss the company’s newest features from comfy sofas scattered throughout the building and even draw diagrams on the walls on the complex.

The building, which was recently renovated for $250 million in a “hacker” style, may provide an inspiring model for new “cool” and “creative” office complexes across the country, Bloomberg News reported.

Nondescript properties with tall ceilings and few interior walls are ideal for Internet firms to take over, Bloomberg said, and are becoming increasingly popular in gateway U.S. cities. “Creative space” is outperforming other property types, said Dan Fasulo, managing director of Real Capital Analytics. “They’ve seen their value skyrocket. A new generation of corporate leaders is looking at space-planning as a core part of business to increase productivity and keep people in the office. The old guard looked at it as an expense.”

New technology has maximized the need for workers to have think-spaces away from their traditional desks, experts said.

“Now that we have mobile devices, we’re freed from the desk, which means we need more formal and informal spaces where we develop relationships and have conversations,” said Georgia Collins, managing director of the North America region for DEGW, a firm which consults on architecture and engineering projects. [Bloomberg]